We all know what interpersonal communication is: all our interactions with friends, coworkers, and strangers fall under that category. But before we can have really successful communication with people, especially in social or public speaking situations, we need to cultivate kind, conscious, and positive INTRA-personal communication skills. Those are the skills we use in private--the talk that goes on between out ears, or that we mutter out loud as we look in the mirror in the morning or put dishes into the dishwasher at night. It's the "you idiot" that you yell at yourself when you drop something. Intra-personal communication is the sigh you let out in the morning when you wake up to grey skies. And it's the self-pitying "why me?" or the fearful "I can't!" that goes through your mind when something unexpected happens.
As you can probably guess by now, this kind of talk--these negative affirmations--can be incredibly detrimental to leading a happy life. They can subtly, or not-so-subtly erode your sense of self confidence which impacts your mood, your posture, and your attitude toward others.
By consciously monitoring what you say to yourself and how you react to life's inevitable unexpected moments, over time you can become the kind of person people want to be with, work with, or take advice from. You can come to a place where enjoy the ride that is life--no matter what the weather! You'll also be the kind of person who walks with confidence, smiles easily, and speaks with conviction and compassion. But thinking this way takes practice.
So much of our culture is based on winning--being not just in the top 10, but number one. Not everyone can be number one, right? Does that mean we're ALL losers? Of course not. Sure, the pressure to be perceived as perfect is pervasive, but we don't have to get sucked into that game. Still, practicing positive intra-personal or self talk is a must for all of us. So, try to stop comparing yourself to others (especially the photo-shopped ones!) and just be kind to you. Look in the mirror and see what IS attractive. Say "oops!" instead of "shit!". Focus on your successes--you've had a lot of them or you wouldn't be here, now. And be patient.
Lastly, I'd ask you if the people in your life are good people? Are they honest, kind, loving, smart,discerning, and successful in their own right? Do you respect and admire the people in your life? Well, if you feel that way about them they probably feel that way about you too. If they fit any part of that description they probably try to hang with others who are like them. (That's human nature.) If they like you, you should like you. Say something nice to yourself right now. Pat yourself on the back for reading this blog post. Now go out and make someone else happy, too.